Kentucky Fried Garden is my journal of vegetable gardening in humid western Kentucky USDA zone 7a. Knowing where my food comes from and whether it comes from non-genetically modified seed is important to me. I try to use open pollinated varieties in an effort to continue maintaining the diversity of food plants available to humans. Trying to extend the harvest by experimenting with hardier varieties and overwintering plants will be one of my projects.
June 30, 2016
Update on Broccoli and Brussels Sprouts
I treated the garden with beneficial nematodes on June 9th, and I think they must be impacting the flea beetle population. Normally I was squishing at least 5 flea beetles on each eggplant but today I only found a couple beetles in the whole eggplant bed.
Lots of bloggers have been talking about starting their winter vegetables. I just finished planting the summer garden, I'm really not ready to start more seedlings. So many decisions to make. What to start and when to start? Lettuce, kale, cabbage, broccoli, carrots, turnips, spinach, fennel. Oh my.
Hmmm. Bush beans will finish by the end of July so carrots can start going in at that point. The current broccoli bed gets no sun whatsoever in the fall/winter months. Maybe brassica seedlings can go in beneath the pepper plants while they're finishing up in September.
June 27, 2016
Harvest Monday, 6/27/16
Honestly only the Smeralda romano type pole bean is setting pods and it's the bean that's heavily afflicted with rust. That's about 10 different varieties of pole and bush beans that are not setting beans at all. I truly think it's the unbearably hot weather. We grew Cherokee Wax and a bunch of the other bush beans last year and they set lots of beans, but then again last year was much cooler and wetter.
Come join is at Harvest Monday, a place where gardeners share what they've been growing and harvesting in their gardens.
June 26, 2016
The Fruiting Vegetable Garden in June
All the tomatoes are three weeks to a month behind, I had to replace 40 plants this year due to varmint destruction. Even so, it looks like it'll be a decent year for tomatoes.
This year we have Serrano chile, Anaheim, Numex Big Jim, Numex Joe Parker, Santa Fe Grande, Lemon, and the hot Fish pepper. Sweet pepper wise, we're growing Corno Rosso, Carmagna Rosso, and Jimmy Nordello. Our daytime temps have been in the 100's (38 degrees Celsius) and nighttime temperatures at 75 degrees, so the plants have been aborting their flowers. This week it's supposed to cool down to the upper 80's (31 Celsius), so hopefully the plants can set more fruit before the next heat wave. Otherwise I'll be resorting to store bought peppers, knuckle bite.
June 12, 2016
Harvest Monday, 6/13/16
It's been so hot lately, 102 degrees this weekend and the humidity today was just awful. Just the act of standing up in the garden made me nauseous and dizzy. I've been watering everyday, but didn't have a chance to apply the rock dust or Bt this weekend. It's not going to cool down anytime soon, so I'll just have to get it done.
We're in that in between time in the garden where everything is just growing. There's tiny beans just forming, lots of little tomatoes, and the eggplants and peppers are starting to blossom. So things are good.
Please join us at Harvest Monday hosted by Dave at Our Happy Acres, a place where gardeners share their harvests and garden goings on.
June 11, 2016
Squash Vine Borer Nearly Kills Tomato
There have been a few of the red moths flying around which are the adult version of the vine borer and of course plenty of cabbage moths fluttering about as well. Luckily the squash plants are still much too little to seduce the moths into laying their eggs, but I'll be spraying Bt on the broccoli and Brussels sprouts tomorrow.
It was actually a fairly large plant and Pantano Romensco is an excellent variety, but it'll now get replaced with a Jubilee tomato. One of the last three unplanted tomato plants that I've been babying after finally potting up the poor root bound creatures.Today I'm tying up tomato plants in the Florida weave style and later watering the garden with a dose of rock dust. I have to admit, my back is killing me and I'm taking breaks each time I finish tying up a row. This style of tomato support system will get much easier once the plants get taller.
Almost forgot to mention. This year I've seen a tiny insect pollinating the tomatoes, a pretty shiny blue-green flying insect with "saddlebags" for carrying pollen just like a normal bee. I've seen them once before at our old place, the year we had a spectacular tomato and pepper harvest.
June 9, 2016
Treating the Garden With Beneficial Nematodes
I've seen little white cabbage moths flying about already so had also ordered some Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis). I'm planning on giving the beneficial nematodes 4 days to penetrate the soil before applying the Bt on Sunday. The rest of this week is supposed to be blazing hot with the weekend getting close to a 100 degrees (38 Celsius). It seems overly hot already, but luckily the humidity isn't as awful as it can be.
June 6, 2016
Harvest Monday, 6/6/16
Garlic scapes, a first time harvest for us. It has a surprisingly powerful scent.
The harvests are very light at this point. Although the Mother Stallard pole beans are just starting to bloom. It's been a slow start to the season with planting being thwarted by rainy weather, but just about everything is in the ground and growing.
Please join us at Harvest Monday hosted by Our Happy Acres. A place where garden enthusiasts share the things happening in their gardens.
June 4, 2016
The Last Things that Need to Be Planted in the Garden
An enormous planter with more gailan surrounding a sweet potato.
There's also pak choi growing in styrofoam containers.
This container of pak choi keeps getting dug out by critters. There's a couple other styrofoam containers that are currently planted with garlic. Once the garlic is pulled they'll be filled with Asian greens.
The rain is thwarting us. There's no way we can start on the fence this weekend. But next week promises to be sunny and dry. Hopefully the mason who's working on our foundation will be able to come out then, too.
I missed taking a picture of our lawn after the dump truck debacle. My husband ended up rototilling and reshaping the whole non-garden area, we'll be adding a couple yards of soil to fill in low spots and then reseed the grass. It's better this way, you always end up with patches of different colored grass when you don't know the variety.
June 3, 2016
Hot Chilli Peppers are Finally Planted in the Garden
My husband and I saw a funnel cloud forming while driving home from dinner Wednesday, luckily it started breaking up once it neared the river. Just a few weeks ago a small tornado hit a town 20 minutes from here. The tornado sirens in our town are incredibly loud and unnerving, a strangely forlorn up and down cry like a voice wailing in anguish.
Aji Lemon Drop hot chilli pepper with its cupped leaves, these are supposed to be especially hot with a wonderful citrus-y flavor.
Serrano hot peppers immediately start producing side shoots when they're very small, they even have side shoots at their cotyledon's point of attatchment. They're a very hot pepper, although not as hot as Santa Fe Grande which I'm also growing.
Four Korean Ginkaku melons were planted amongst the pepper bed. I'm hoping they're similar to the melons we ate while visiting my dad in Virginia.
The tomato supports will get put in some time next week because this weekend I'm helping my husband put in the support posts for a fence. So exciting! The tomato support system I've decided to use this year is the Florida weave which just uses t-posts and twine, two things I have lots of.
But I don't know what happened to this Pantano Romensco tomato, the top part just flopped over and died. The stem isn't broken or anything, makes me think of insects or some kind of disease, or maybe it got wacked with the heavy hose.
I'm going to have to give up on growing eggplants in the ground, it's impossible to fight the flea beetles. Should I dig them up and replace them with pepper plants, or just leave them in the ground and keep fighting the battle? I still have a few eggplants in pots that'll probably end up making the front porch their home.
Gray-blue little mushrooms, very delicate and only lasting a day before disappearing.
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